American History is one of my favorite topics to study. I love our country and marvel at it’s rise from faraway colony to the world’s super power. There have been major struggles along the way to success, including an attempt to self destruct. The internal bickering turned in political battles, and eventually became the war between the North and South.
Abraham Lincoln had to deal with unintended consequences of placation. Prior politics had led to an avoidance of conflict through a relinquishing of authority. Because of this, it became harder to keep the values of the country at the epicenter of its leaders’ decision making process. Inconsistency became the norm and discontent grew, culminating in the crossroads where two sides were adamant there would be no compromise.
Lincoln is recognized for his ability to apply lofty principles to practical problems. He understood the complexity of challenges and the different points of view that come with them. He was a genius at defining the greater purpose of this pivotal time in our young country’s history. He was determined to not allow us to become laissez-faire with our principles, despite the resistance of some of the strongest minds and powerful generals in the land. Aggressive accountability was needed to ensure that the sacrifices of the nation were worthwhile.
For all the controversy Lincoln’s actions created, his conviction and strength of character, his heartfelt honesty, and his fierce courage commanded the loyalty and confidence of the American people. Ultimately the passion to pursue the nation’s ideals and the progress that comes with them beat out the formidable attempts to maintain the status quo.
Maybe our country would have been better if it did not lose so much of its treasure, attention, and people to the Civil War. Maybe its better because it did.